If my life had a voice and told you my journey, you wouldn’t believe it, and because of HIS grace, there’s no way you can see it…. This is the first verse of Deon Kipping’s song, “I Don’t Look Like ( What I’ve Been Through )” (video above)
Listening to this song nearly brings tears to my eyes. It makes me think about all I’ve been through until this point in my life, and I’m still okay. You couldn’t possibly know what I’ve been through by looking at me. I’m asked all the time in here, “How long you been down?” When I tell people they say, “No Way! You don’t look like it!” I’m unsure what I’m supposed to look like after 15 1/2 years in prison, but I guess I don’t fit the mold. It’s because I don’t allow prison to control who I am as a man. I have issues in here but I don’t let it get to the point where I’m broken.
If you were to look into my eyes you’d see love, pain, suffering, and confidence. What you won’t see is weakness. I’ve been through too much in life to be weak. Coming to prison was the thing I feared most in life. Once I realized that I can handle anything, it was time to make moves that would get me through this part of life. Some days were hard, I can’t lie. I had to dig deep to get through. I thought about my daughters and what it would mean to them if I just gave up and let prison be it for me. From this side we’re always looking for ways to show our loved ones we’re good. We know they do them same for us. It’s not easy on either side but that’s where love shows itself.
Behind these gates you have to make moves as if you’re playing chess. One bad move could be detrimental to your time inside. You can’t allow your emotions to control your actions. There are times when you may hang up the phone with a loved on and be angry at something you can’t control. It happens even to the best of us. Those are the times when you have to practice self-control. I’ve grown passed the stage of letting people “Get To Me” like they used to. I know in order for me to make it home safely and set a good example for my daughters, I have to be fully responsible for my actions…There are also times when you can hang up the phone feeling like you’re on top of the world! Those are the times when a loved one has given you hope. That’s what has kept me going. The reason I don’t look like what I’ve been through is because through it all I’ve trusted GOD. GOD has provided what and need and who I need in my life. The fact that I’m able to reach out to people on IMT is just another example of GOD’s work!
People don’t always look like what they’ve been through because some kinda way they made it. It’s amazing to look back over your life and think, “How did I get here?” It lets you know that no matter what you’re going through now, it’s not the end. Happiness is always around the corner if you believe in it.
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